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Seamless training enables swift email system upgrade at AsureQuality

When AsureQuality decided it was time to move to a new state-of-the-art email system, it realised training its people on the new technology would be vital.

The food safety and biosecurity services provider planned to upgrade from Novell's GroupWise email software to Microsoft Outlook 2013, but needed to ensure all staff were proficient with the new system as soon as it was rolled out.

The company selected Auldhouse to provide the training to best support it during this transition. "They're very confident in what they do so it was a no brainer for us really,' says AsureQuality's IT Service Delivery Manager, Lynn Cooper.

The challenge

With only a three-week window available for training before the new product was to be launched across the company, Auldhouse's first priority was to determine the skillset of AsureQuality's employees.

The approach was to start by getting a good understanding of the company and its people and what challenges a mainly agricultural-based environment would present in terms of IT capability. Auldhouse then suggested a survey be sent to all employees to get a clear picture of each person's level of knowledge before suggesting a programme of training.

One of the key reasons for why it was so imperative that all staff were comfortable with Outlook 2013 before the launch date was that some of AsureQuality's business is time sensitive and delays would not only impact revenue, but reputation too, says Cooper.

"We've got a lot of things that are time-bound such as live animal exports," explains Cooper. "They can't leave the port until the compliance report is emailed to the correct people. So without email, this can't be done and the animals cannot be sent".

And with AsureQuality's reputation and revenue on the line, it wasn't difficult for Cooper to get the executive team's support on the importance and necessity of the training for everyone in the organisation.

The Auldhouse approach

Based on the survey responses, Auldhouse put together a programme of planned sessions across Auckland, Hamilton, Napier, Palmerston North, Wellington, Nelson, Christchurch, Ashburton and Dunedin. Due to the limited time frame, a dedicated trainer travelled the North Island and another the South Island. Each had a classroom of eight laptops and set up a simulated network, allowing trainees to practice using Outlook without risking affecting their own business emails or network.

"The plan and execution was all Auldhouse's.  All we provided was an on-site contact and they took care of the rest, including liaising with staff on timings and venue," says Cooper.

The training sessions were followed up with the distribution of a training guide to everyone across the company that included detailed visuals on the basics of Outlook 2013.

Results

The training ensured AsureQuality's people who attended training were confident on the new Outlook platform as soon as it was deployed. As a result, the organisation was able to upgrade to a new, more modern email platform without any training issues to its business.

"Auldhouse was really slick and took care of everything, allowing us to focus on what we needed to be doing. They took control, got it done and it was seamless," says Cooper.

"Even with the tight timeframes, I was never nervous because Auldhouse didn't make me nervous. They were cool, calm and collected."  

The feedback Cooper's team received about the training sessions was very positive, with praise for the high-quality of the material and 'hands-on' opportunities they provided, says Cooper.

 

About Auldhouse

Auldhouse is New Zealand's largest privately-owned provider of IT training and is Microsoft New Zealand's only Gold Learning Partner.  With more than 25 years' experience providing high quality training across IT and professional development; Auldhouse has become the partner of choice for many of New Zealand's leading organisations as well as the world's largest software vendors. Auldhouse have national training facilities in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch.

For more information: www.auldhouse.co.nz